Donner Party Archaeology

Donner Campsite

Publication: Overland Journal, Vol. 10, No. 3

Author: Donald L. Hardesty

Date of Publication: 1992

PDF File: volume-10-no-3-fall-1992.pdf


The following article by Professor Donald Hardesty is based on a paper which he delivered at the Oregon-California Trails Association’s 1990 convention. His paper described the recent archaeological excavation which he led for the purpose of establishing the precise location of the Donner family campsite, known to be several miles from the camp of the major part of the Donner party. The site of the larger camp, known as the lake camp because of its proximity to what is now Donner Lake, has been well established for several years. However, until Professor Hardesty’s 1990 excavation, there have had been some controversy about the location of the Donner family camp.